What Is a Domain Name?

A Domain Name is the “address” of your web site. It usually look something like “www.yourcompany.com”. Domain Names are purchased and registered through a domain name registrar.

Since no two domain names can be identical, registering a domain name reserves you the right to its exclusive use.

Domain Name registration must be renewed annually via the registrar, or else the Domain Name becomes available for someone else to purchase.

Choosing a Domain Name

Purchasing a Domain Name helps to secure your “Internet identity”, by reserving a name that relates to your company. When choosing a Domain Name, try to pick something that is memorable, descriptive of your endeavour, and the shorter, the better.

You can select a Domain Name in various formats such as www.yourcompanyname.com or www.your-company-name.com, etc… you can also choose one of several available postfixes, such as .com, .ca, .org, .net, etc.

Keywords, and their use, are often misunderstood and we get lots of questions about them at Back2Front. The most important first step to any SEO effort is to identify your best keywords. Next is to use them appropriately in your web site.

So, what exactly are keywords?
Think of the words you type in the Google search to find something, those are keywords. They are called ‘keywords’ because they are important or essential words that carry the most meaning. Words such as “the, an, a, of, or” etc., are not considered keywords. Neither are words that convey non-specific notions like “synergistic, integrity, very, quality, every, any” etc., considered keywords since they are not valuable for searching purposes. Punctuation, case sensitive, and in most cases plurals are ignored during searches, so if you were assembling a list of your top keywords the words “child” and “Child’s” would be redundant.

How are keywords used in a search?
If you were looking on-line for an accountant, you would likely type the keyword accountant’. On the results page, you would get thousands of listings that include that word. You would see results for accountants all over the world and possibly a listing for a famous historical accountants. As these results would not be suitable for your purpose, you would perhaps try again with the keywords accounting Toronto.’ Again, you would get thousands of listings, but now the first listings would have both the words accounting’ and Toronto’. Listings on the last few pages of results could have either the word Toronto’ or the word accounting’, and not both.

If you are an experienced searcher, maybe you would type: accounting firm located in Thornhill.” You would use quotes to surround the words, which tells Google you are searching for the whole phrase. Now your results would be reduced to a few listings and hopefully you would find exactly what you were looking for.

How should keywords be used in a web site?
So if you are an accountant trying to optimize your web site to get more clients, what should you do? You should include good keywords like accounting firm located in Thornhill” into the text of your home page. The closer the match to the exact keyword phrase your ideal client would use, the better. The more often, the more emphasized, and the higher on the page the search terms appear, the better.

Meta Tags and keywords
Back in the day, it was useful to help the search engines figure out what your web page topic was by adding keywords into the code of the web site using the ‘keywords meta tag’. However, search engine technology has progressed beyond that now, and the keywords meta tag is no longer used by most search engines.

However, since the contents of the ‘Title’ tag of a web page are visible to people, that tag is still useful for SEO, and it helps your users as well. You should include your best keywords in the title tag of each page of your web site.

Keyword Focus, Targeting, and Clarity
Choose your keywords carefully; each additional keyword you use will take significance away from the previous keyword.

In our example, the search engines have to figure out, “is this page about accounting or is it about the town of Thornhill?” Since you are likely to have many more words relating to accounting than your location, Google will probably get it right. However, if you add too many useless words like “professionalism”, “integrity” or “office solutions” instead of good keywords, or if you say too much about the accounting software you use, or included content about your hobby growing orchids, Google may get confused. In this case, the search engine will rank your page much lower for the word “accounting” than your competitor’s web page, which may talk only about accounting. Try to keep each page of your web site focused on a single topic. Your home page should be a synopsis of your web site – focusing on your core message.

Competing for Keywords successfully
When you are competing on the World Wide Web with a vast and ever increasing number of web sites for traffic, the only way to successfully compete is to focus on your content to target your ideal clients. Do not be tempted to be “all inclusive” in your approach to SEO and Keywords. If you don’t make it absolutely clear and specific to the search engines what you are offering, then your competitors who are doing this – will out compete you for the traffic you want.

Responsive design makes the website responsive so that it renders well on a variety of devices and screen sizes.  It detects the visitor’s screen size and orientation and changes the layout accordingly.

One of the great strengths of digital media is its ability to display identical content in different ways with just a few instructions. In fact, if there are no formatting instructions at all for how to display text, the text of a web site will wrap according to the size of the display device. In other words, by default web sites are responsive. In recent years, however, sites have become more graphical and are designed for specific widths. This has caused some problems for mobile users.

The landscape is shifting, perhaps more quickly than we might like. The Internet isn’t just on your computer screen anymore. It’s also on your phone, your tablet, your laptop.

Mobile browsing is expected to outpace desktop-based access within three to five years. Responsive layouts are specifically designed to keep mobile devices in mind. Responsive Design aims to produce the optimal user experience for different use cases and environments, all built into one website. Responsive Design mostly relies on liquid design. This means it must be designed and constructed to adapt to the size of the device. Not all design concepts will translate effectively to the responsive architecture requirements.

Responsive web design is a way of making a single web site that works effectively on both desktop browsers and the myriad of mobile devices on the market. Responsive architecture gives the best quality browsing experience – whether on a smartphone, tablet, netbook or e-reader, and regardless of the operating system.

People who browse while on-the-go have very different needs than those sitting at a desk. Responsive web sites re-organize themselves automatically according to the device viewing them, so that the same web site provides a great experience everywhere. Desktops get a full-blown interface with videos, large images and animations. Smartphones get a simplified web site that runs fast without the bells and whistles. Tablets and netbooks get something in between.

The web site automatically adjusts according to the device’s screen size and orientation. Large or small – landscape or portrait, responsive sites switch between these on the fly. The layout of a responsive web site can change to accommodate the device viewing it. If you want your current web site adapted to the responsive architecture requirements you may need to make significant design changes and this may result in a web site that looks different from the original.